MetroPCS and T-Mobile in talks to merge

      By Shaun Zelber,  October 3rd, 2012 :: News & Events

MetroPCS says it is the seventh-largest US wireless carrier and has more than 9 million subscribers behind America Movil’s Tracphone and Sprint and Comcast’s Clearwire respectively 5th and 6th. T-Mobile USA is presently the fourth-largest mobile carrier with 33 million customers.

The merged carrier would still be 4th but would come up close to Sprint.

This would create a 4th heavyweight in the US. Difficulties obviously are that MetroPCS is CDMA and T-Mobile is GSM.

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 Skyfire launches app discovery tool from their browser

      By Shaun Zelber,  October 2nd, 2012 :: Apps & Sites

App search company Quixey has partnered with browser technology company Skyfire to create a new app discovery tool for Android called Skyfire Horizon.

Using a toolbar embedded into Android browsers by participating operators, it integrates Quixey’s discovery technology to allow mobile users to find apps that are relevant to the content they are viewing.

For example, if a user is reading content on ESPN, Quixey will recommend apps from this content provider as well as other relevant sport titles.

Users are also offered a Quixey search bar at the top of the apps page, to enable users to search for apps to help them achieve a particular task.

Quixey secured US$20 million in funding in June which it plans to use “to expand its world-class team, drive global partnerships and further develop the company’s ground breaking Functional Search technology”.

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 Apple and Google bosses in talks to end Patent Wars

      By Shaun Zelber,  August 31st, 2012 :: News & Events, OS & Handsets

It is widely being reported that Apple’s boss Tim Cook and Google’s CEO Larry Page are in on and off talks to try and resolve the potentially fatal war over patents that both companies are waging.

Apple on one side is fighting a proxy war against Google by attacking the OEMs that use the Android operating system saying that many of the features of the OEM’s software are blatant copies of their iOS. Google and the manufacturers are counter suing Apple for patent infringement.

Apple has famously won more then a billion in damages from Samsung in the USA. On the other hand in other regions it has gone in the other direction with Apple having to pull products off their shelves or pay compensation.

In their case Apple has had to reveal many trade secrets to be able to prove that the others copied their features.

In the long run Apple can’t possibly benefit from fighting cases against : Samsung, Sony, HTC, Motorola and ultimately against Google. Too much time and effort will go into the war and take away precious ressources from making great products. It would be better that the different parties come together and decide on something fair that will profit all parties and ultimately the consumer.

Of course to get there it would require good faith, less ego and some good old common sense. Those three things are not necessarily in stock.

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 Tizen is coming

      By Shaun Zelber,  August 31st, 2012 :: OS & Handsets

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 GREE Advertising and MobPartner Team Up in Mobile Ads

      By Shaun Zelber,  August 3rd, 2012 :: Apps & Sites, News & Events


Tokyo, Japan – August 2, 2012 – GREE Advertising, Inc. (“GREE Advertising”) today announced a partnership with MobPartner SAS (“MobPartner”), a leading French mobile affiliate network. The alliance will enable game developers and publishers on GREE Platform to take advantage of industry-leading app discovery and user acquisition technologies across smartphone operating systems.

GREE and MobPartner will collaborate to offer developers and publishers on GREE Platform a new suite of promotion tools and serv

ices that will draw from MobPartner’s proven mobile marketing expertise and international network of mobile affiliates. Enabling granular, localized targeting of the optimal mobile media for each app, he new mobile ad solutions will benefit developers and publishers by facilitating cost-effective acquisition of users from GREE’s global community of high-engagement players, and the global market as a whole.

By driving new user registration to GREE Platform, the partnership is also expected to accelerate the growth of GREE Platform itself. Launched globally in May 2012, GREE Platform is an integrated platform combining social gaming and other applications with social networking features that, with a reach of 169 countries, is the largest of its kind in the world.

“We are excited about this partnership with GREE, as it brings an enormous opportunities within reach,” said Guillaume Alabert, Co-Founder of MobPartner. “After years of evangelism, the mobile user acquisition market has now reached critical mass, thanks to players such as GREE who are willing to invest aggressively in new fields. We also see this partnership as a confirmation of MobPartner’s expertise, and the reliability of our technology.”

“The future is bright for mobile ads and mobile social gaming, sectors that are growing rapidly as smartphone penetration increases in key markets around the world,” said Tatsuhei Asanuma, CEO of GREE Advertising. “By matching MobPartner’s mobile ad capabilities and ad network with GREE’s expanding global reach, developer community and user base, we’ll be able to help deliver new products faster, and to more people than ever.”

App discovery/ user acquisition flow

About MobPartner
MobPartner is the number one global Mobile Affiliate Network based in France. With a network of over 100,000 publishers and 1000 campaigns MobPartner helps advertisers and agencies drive incremental revenue across the globe, acquire new users and they only pay for performance. Our R.O.I – driven model (CPA) allows every type of action (CPS, CPL, CPI) on all Operating System.We offer publishers innovative tools and services for the monetization of 100% of their traffic. Our commitment to providing premium services in total transparency and openness to our partners is a fundamental base of our worldwide success.

GREE Advertising, Inc.
GREE Advertising provides advertising agency services to support global promotions targeting smartphones. GREE Advertising was launched in April 2012, as 100% Subsidiary of GREE, Inc. Alongside its own advertising products, GREE Advertising is pursuing strategic alliances and business with major Internet mobile advertising companies around the world, and is developing sales and support offices overseas, mainly in North America, Europe and Asia.


GREE, Inc. PR Roppongi Hills Mori Tower, 6-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan E-mail : URL : Twitter : @GREE_pr_jp
MobPartner 86 rue de Charonne 75011 Paris, France E-mail: URL: Twitter: @MobPartner

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 Mobile Internet Usage Exploding Latam

      By Shaun Zelber,  July 28th, 2012 :: Apps & Sites, General

In June 2012 a presentation from Marcos Christensen—comScore country manager for Argentina and Uruguay—offered some compelling data on mobile device usage in Argentina from comScore’s Device Essentials service.

More Mobile Traffic Than Ever
First, non-computer devices accounted for 2.1% of the web traffic in Argentina, similar to the amount measured for Brazil (2%). In addition, comScore points out that non-computer web traffic has increased in nearly 100% in Argentina between 2011 and 2012. Despite this spike, Mexico and Chile seem to be ahead of both Argentina and Brazil in terms of using the mobile web: for each country, 4.6% of their respective web traffic comes from non-computer devices like mobile phones and tablets.

Mobile Phones vs. Tablets in Latam
When the device traffic is broken down for these markets, the following emerges:
• Argentina: 70% of non-computer web traffic is from mobiles, 25% from tablets
• Brasil: 54% of non-computer web traffic is from mobiles, 44% is from tablets
• Chile: 81% of non-computer web traffic is from mobiles, 15% is from tablets
• Mexico: 59% of non-computer web traffic is from mobiles, 30% is from tablets

Clearly, both Mexico and Brasil are great markets for selling tablets—and the high tablet use is something marketers and advertisers should consider when creating online campaigns for these markets. In addition, a recent projection from Cisco says that non-computer devices—smartphones, notebooks and tablets—will account for 21% of web traffic in Brazil by 2016.

Other Signs of the Rise of Mobile Internet in Latin America
Clearly, deeper mobile phone penetration and a surge in smartphone sales are both clear indicators of the rise of mobile Internet in the region. But we’ve covered them before in depth. However, another indicator that we haven’t focused on is mobile broadband, and that’s also gaining ground in Latin America’s major markets:

• Argentina: 194% increase in mobile broadband subscribers between 2010 (1.7 million) and 2012 (5 million)
• Brasil: 14 million mobile broadband subscribers in 2010, 73 million projected by end of 2012—421% growth
• Chile: 105% increase in mobile broadband connections in 2011
• Colombia: 69% increase in mobile Internet use in 2011
• Costa Rica: 35% of mobile phone users access the Internet, up from 14% in 2010
• Mexico: 107% growth in mobile broadband subscriptions between 2011 and 2012
• Uruguay: 60% increase in mobile broadband connections in 2011

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 Android stalls in USA and iOS is up

      By Shaun Zelber,  July 6th, 2012 :: Apps & Sites, General, News & Events, OS & Handsets

Growth of Google’s Android operating system continues to slow, hovering just above 50 percent U.S. smartphone market share for the third consecutive month, according to new data published by research firm comScore.

Android-based devices represented 50.9 percent of all smartphones nationwide in May 2012, up from 50.8 percent in April but still down from a high of 51 percent in March. Android’s stasis coincides with a recent upswing for Apple’s iOS: Five years after the retail launch of the first iPhone, the iOS mobile operating system now powers 31.9 percent of all smartphones in the U.S., up from 31.4 percent in April 2012 and an increase from 30.7 percent in March.

Android and iOS now make up a combined 82.8 percent of the U.S. smartphone market. Research In Motion’s BlackBerry continues to crumble, sliding from 11.6 percent market share in April to 11.4 percent in May. After several months in decline, Microsoft’s Windows platform held steady month-over-month at 4 percent, with Symbian bringing up the rear at 1.1 percent, down from 1.3 percent in April.

Close to 110 million U.S. mobile subscribers now carry smartphones, up 5 percent since February 2012, comScore reports. Text messaging behaviors remain unchanged since February, with 74.8 percent of U.S. subscribers sending a text to another mobile device. At the same time, 51.1 percent of subscribers used a downloaded app in May, up from 49.5 percent in February, and 49.8 percent accessed the mobile browser, up from 49.2 percent three months earlier. In addition, 36.7 percent accessed a social networking site or blog in May (up from 36.1 percent in February), 33.5 percent played games (up from 32.2 percent) and 27 percent listened to music on their phone (up from 24.8 percent).

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 Businesses want apps too

      By Shaun Zelber,  July 3rd, 2012 :: Apps & Sites

Companies are keen to purchase multiple mobile applications or make them for use by employees, partners and contractors but feel that consumer markets like iTunes and Google Play are not business friendly, a survey has shown.

The Corporate Mobile App Strategy Survey, published this week by Partnerpedia, found that 78 % of the large companies, had a desire to purchase apps. Of those, 90.2 % intend to buy solutions for use by employees, while 43.9 % wanted apps for customers. The survey, which also included responses from companies with less than 500 employees, found that 22 % are downloading apps for contractors.

Eric Klein, a senior analyst in VDC’s Mobile and Wireless practice, said: “As mobile device proliferation continues in the enterprise, so too will app enablement, this is challenging CIO’s and IT organisations to figure out the best way to manage, procure and secure apps.”
Despite the strong majority wanting to buy apps, the survey also revealed concerns over current markets, such as Apple’s app store. A total of 57.4 % felt current app stores had a “lack of business focus”, 43.4 % said there was an inability to own/control app licenses. Respondents also cited a lack of purchasing orders or bulk buy discounts.

The research found that 63.7 % would look to outsource the development of apps. The most important criteria associated with choosing a provider were design expertise (74.3 per cent), systems integration (68.1 %) and customisation (64.6 %).

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 Aakash a game changer ?

      By Shaun Zelber,  June 26th, 2012 :: Geek & Tech, General

There has been news of very cheap Android tablets hitting the markets in Asia and elsewhere such as LATAM and Africa. The first version launched towards the end of last year didn’t take off as well as expected. Now the Aakash 2 is here. Set to launch in the US for $60. Yes you got that right !

In Indian the government will subsidize it and make it available for students at $35 !

Here is a video that you can see some of the specs :

You can find out more here.

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 Android apps on Tizen

      By Shaun Zelber,  June 25th, 2012 :: Apps & Sites, Geek & Tech

Starting up a new mobile platform is surely a challenge now that incumbents iOS and Android have such a strong following. Many have tried and failed miserably. Not least of all Palm and then HP, Samsung’s Bada and we can’t say that Windows Phone is doing that great but that is still in play so we will see. The biggest obstacle is finding developers to write applications for a new OS, to really adopt the platform and run with it.

OpenMobile might give hope to Tizen, one of the newest operating systems for smartphones and tablets: Using OpenMobile’s software, Tizen devices can run native Android applications as shown in this video captured by the Handheld Blog.

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